Better broadband in Lake County has seemed like a dream and a nightmare – and I’m writing from the sidelines! The very abridged version is that Lake County got ARRA funding to build a fiber network. Their road was not smooth but the Lake County News Chronicle reports that they have signed up their first customers…
There has been no shortage of opposition to the ambitious project, however, and legal battles, delays caused by competitors and contractual issues have plagued the initiative since its 2010 inception.
Through all of the setbacks, the county has persevered, stringing fiber cable and touting the benefits of bringing broadband to homes and businesses throughout the area.
“Right now, we’re just focusing on finishing our build and turning up services,” said county administrator Matt Huddleston.
Roiland said about 100 customers in Silver Bay, a town of 1,800, have been connected to services and a few beta testers are trying it out in Two Harbors, including Granite Gear, an outdoor equipment company headquartered in the town. Dave Johnson, the strategic accounts manager for the 28-year-old company, said fast internet has become essential to Granite Gear in recent years.
“It’s not just nice having faster internet, but it has become an absolute necessity,” he said.